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At the high school level, the achievement gap between urban and suburban students is significant. Many urban students lack the fundamental skills in math and science required to excel in a technological society. MIT’s Saturday Engineering Enrichment and Discovery (SEED) Academy is designed to prepare traditionally underserved local students to join the technical workforce.
SEED Academy is a free program for public high school students living in Boston, Cambridge, and Lawrence, Massachusetts. In collaboration with families, schools, community organizations, and MIT, SEED Academy provides students with academic support and opportunities for engineering career exploration. The Academy fosters students’ achievement in high school and beyond through a compelling curriculum, challenging learning environment, and access to positive role models and world-class resources at MIT.
The SEED Academy Curriculum
Over seven semesters, students learn how engineering and technology are used in today’s society and what developments are expected in those fields in the future. Hands-on, stimulating coursework strengthens students’ foundational math, science, and communication skills, and helps prepare them for academic and professional careers in the technical fields. Based on Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks, the SEED Academy curriculum builds on skills students have already mastered and reinforces the lessons students learn at school during the week.
During SEED Academy, students take specific courses during the fall and spring in areas such as civil engineering, mechanical engineering, computer science, robotics, electronics, synthetic biology, as well as a life mastery class. SEED Academy also provides a leadership series where guest speakers who are a current or future leader in STEM fields, higher education, or industry are invited to speak to the SEED students. The purpose of this series is to support SEED’s vision of increasing the pipeline of future leaders in STEM careers.